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Ocean Surface Topography from Space
Improvement of Altimetry Assimilation in operational ocean forecast systems for the Canadian Arctic


Fraser Davidson - (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)

Co-Principal Investigator(s):
  Youyu Lu
Hal Ritchie
Greg Smith
(Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
(Environment Canada)
(Environment Canada)


Improvement of Altimetry Assimilation in operational ocean forecast systems for the Canadian Arctic
Concepts REGional Domain CREG12: Velocity magnitude from free model run to which satellite data assimilation will be applied for ice and ocean analysis as part of the Canadian Operational Network of Coupled Environmental PredicTion Systems Regional Forecast System. CREG12 is a subset of the ORCA12 domain. Coordinates shown are in CREG12 grid indexes.
CONCEPTS (Canadian Operational Network of Coupled Environmental PredicTion Systems) is an MOU collaboration within Canada for developing ocean monitoring and forecasting with an emphasis towards delivering coupled operational Atmosphere-Ocean-Ice prediction systems to run in operations at the Canadian Meteorological Center. CONCEPTS ocean forecasting systems are based on MERCATOR- OCEAN ocean forecasting systems using both the NEMO ocean model and the SAM2 SEEK data assimilation system for altimetry, SST and in-situ data.

As altimetry assimilation for the open ocean in mid latitudes and tropics matures, there is a trend towards application of altimetry assimilation in coastal/shelf regions as re-tracked altimeter data products for these regions are produced. Additionally with the advent of new altimeter missions such as Cryosat, the volume of altimetry data products at higher latitudes are increasing. This is particularly important for improving ocean forecasts in waters of the Canadian Arctic.

The proposal for this project is as follows:

  • Validate and transfer towards operations a 1/4 degree global ocean forecast system that is a slight variant of the MERCATOR-OCEAN PSY3 ocean analysis and forecast system. This system will be run stand alone and then coupled two way to atmospheric forecasts.
  • Adapt a MERCATOR-OCEAN SAM2 data assimilation system to the CONCEPTS regional ocean domain covering the Arctic and North Atlantic Oceans on an ORCA12 subset domain. In particular merging data assimilation (3DVar FGAT) of ice observations with SAM2 (SEEK) ocean data assimilation.
  • Assimilation of Cryosat data (Dibaboure et al 2011) into a regional 1/12th degree Ocean model for the Arctic and North Atlantic Oceans
  • Evaluate and demonstrate Impact of assimilation of Cryosat Altimetry data regions of seasonal ice presence (Arctic Ocean, Canada Basin...).
  • Deliver a validated 1/12th degree regional ocean forecast system for operations at Environment Canada's Canadian Meteorological Center.
  • Application of any new coastal altimetry products (i.e. Volkov et al 2007) for the Arctic and North West Atlantic to the CONCEPTS Regional System on the CREG12 domain (Arctic-North- Atlantic).

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